Ceremony for the 60th anniversary of Okinawan immigration to Bolivia held
August 18, 2014 Ryukyu Shimpo
This year marks the 60th anniversary since Okinawans emigrated to Bolivia, and established their community by reclaiming dense forest. On August 17, a ceremony for the 60th anniversary of the immigration was held in Bolivia. The participants of the ceremony paid tribute to the first generation of Okinawan Bolivians. They urged the second and third generations to tell the history of their pioneers. The visiting group from Okinawa reflected on the difficulties the pioneers experienced. They pledged to keep connecting with the Okinawan Bolivian community in order to maintain the legacy of the settlement site and Okinawan identity in the country.
During the ceremonial period, an Okinawan college student Shun Kawamitsu who visited Bolivia for the occasion, interacted with all the Okinawan immigrants. Kawamitsu said, “I would like the settlement site to keep securing the identity of Okinawa. Even after coming back to Okinawa, I would like to continue to interact with Okinawan Bolivian people, and motivate each other.”
Naha Mayor Takeshi Onaga said, “Okinawan people and Okinawan immigrants share Chimugukuru or compassionate hearts. They are important for Okinawa to become internationally recognized. I hope that Okinawan people all around the world will get united to promote the prefecture.”
(English translation by T&CT)
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